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Western Conference Free Agency Grades

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Dallas

DAL

Death, taxes, and the Mavs strike out in free agency. No one can explain it. Everyone knew someone would give Barnes the max deal, and Dallas was the one that bit the bullet. At least Dirk will be getting more money.

Denver

DEN

A quiet free agency for a team that can go in a lot of directions. Perhaps they’re looking for trades to make.

Golden State

GSW

They actually did it, the absolute madmen. Hopefully the NBA doesn’t overreact to the Durant signing by changing the CBA. This kind of transfer needed so many things to happen in order for Durant to make it to the bay. The bench will certainly be thinner, but the Warriors managed to keep Iguodala, though at the cost of Bogut, Barnes, Ezeli. Clark can potentially fulfill Barbosa’s role, while West can be a more effective version of Speights albeit with fewer threes. The center position remains thin, but does it really matter?

Houston

HOU

Houston loses Dwight Howard’s contract and attitude, handing the center reigns to Clint Capela. Ryan Anderson and Eric Gordon should have some more space to work with with due to Harden’s gravity, and Nene can prove to be an active player off the bench.

LA Clippers

LAC

GM Roc Divers once again foils the plans of Coach Doc Rivers. I’m not sure how they were able to get Mbah a Moute on such a deal, but those Crawford and Rivers contracts are atrocious. I don’t understand how Doc is allowed to keep GM responsibilities when it’s clear he either is unable or unwilling to build a team properly.

LA Lakers

LAL

A mix of good and bad. The Mozgov and Deng contracts are clear overpays, but Clarkson was brought back under market value. Tarik Black should help the frontcourt, but he can’t be relied upon for serious minutes, though it may not be an option with Mozgov starting. Jose Calderon should be able to provide veteran guidance for the Lakers young core of players.

Memphis

MEM

Losing Matt Barnes hurts, and Memphis will once again be stuck in the awkward position of being good enough to make the playoffs, but not be in talks for title contention. Perhaps it can be viewed as a smart business strategy and a small market team, but it does keep them in a weird spot.

Minnesota

MIN

Like Philadelphia, Minnesota’s offseason wasn’t centered on free agency. Nonetheless, they signed two players who can help shore up the bench and keep the Wolves competitive while the core starters get their rest.

New Orleans

NOP

I don’t even know where to put the blame. Is it Tom Benson not wanting to spend any money? Are Dell Demps and Mickey Arison this incompetent? Do players not want to be in New Orleans? Solomon Hill was benched last year and they’re giving him starter money? Even Ryan Anderson was willing to trash Pelicans the second he left. Anthony Davis needs to demand a trade to get out of this mess.

Oklahoma City

OKC

I like the trade for Oladipo, but it doesn’t matter. Their only goal was to keep Kevin Durant, which they were unable to do. The title window has officially closed.

 

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Posted By: Ethan Stern

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